President Biden said on Wednesday his crime prevention strategy will focus on strengthening background checks, banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, and strengthening community policing.
Biden met with state and local leaders and law enforcement officials ahead of his remarks to discuss crime prevention strategy, amid an upsurge in violence in cities across the United States
Biden and Attorney General Merrick Garland, who spoke before him, pointed to a historic increase in crime in the summer and said the increase “could be more pronounced” as the country emerges from the COVID-pandemic. 19.
White House insisted that tackling gun violence is key to containing ‘staggering’ wave of crime in the United States
“Talk to the most responsible gun owners, they’ll tell you there’s no justification for having 100 rounds in a magazine,” Biden said.
Biden also took aim at an argument used by Second Amendment advocates that the right to self-defense should guard against possible government tyranny.
“Those who say Patriots blood, you know, and all the stuff about how we’re going to have to act against the government,” Biden said. “If you think you need weapons to take on the government, you need F-15s and maybe nuclear weapons. “
“We are not changing the Constitution. We apply it, ”continued the president.
Biden touted “zero tolerance” for gun dealers who willfully break the law, and claimed that 90% of illegal guns found at crime scenes were attributed to 5% of gun dealers.
The “zero tolerance” policy targets federally licensed firearms dealers who “voluntarily” transfer a weapon to a person prohibited from owning one or ignore a tracing request from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). The ATF would seek to revoke the dealer’s license after the first violation, a senior White House official said.
“If you willfully sell a firearm to someone who is prohibited from owning it, if you willfully fail to perform a background check, if you willfully tamper with a recording … my message to you is: will find and seek your license to sell firearms, ”Biden said.
The National Rifle Association said the Biden initiative was an attempt to distract from the real causes of an increase in crime.
“This is a political red herring to hide the real and abysmal failures of the Biden administration,” NRS spokeswoman Amy Hunter told Fox News. “Crime rates are high due to efforts to fund police and the lack of prosecution of career criminals. The simple fact is that strict enforcement of existing laws – including gun laws – coupled with the support of law enforcement and prosecutors to do their jobs would lead to a dramatic decrease in crime. But, the president would rather play politics than make Americans safer. “
Biden also boasted of “historic crime prevention funding” in the $ 350 billion for state and local governments from the $ 1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief program, which may be used by cities to hire law enforcement officers, pay overtime, prosecute gun traffickers, and invest in technology to make law enforcement more efficient. Officials said the Biden administration hoped cities would also choose to use the money for alternatives to policing and to invest in community policing models.
The administration has also targeted “ghost guns” and modified firearms, which are homemade firearms without a serial number that can be used to trace them, making it difficult for law enforcement to determine where. , by whom or when they were made and to whom they were sold.
Last month, the Justice Department’s ATF sought to update the legal definition of “firearm” in an effort to crack down on phantom weapons.
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Biden has also pushed employment programs to keep young people busy and off the streets during the summer months, as they are often both the target and perpetrator of such violence. Biden said such programs encourage young people to “take a paycheck instead of a gun.”
The president said the Justice Ministry had created five new “strike forces” to crack down on illegal arms trafficking cartels and called on the Senate to re-authorize the violence against women law, thereby eliminating “the boyfriend’s loophole to keep guns out of abusive hands.